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Friday's Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Bed Bath & Beyond, Caterpillar, Costco, Nvidia, Pure Storage, Seagate, Taiwan Semiconductor and More

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The futures were higher Friday, as we get ready to end a dreadful trading week. Many across Wall Street are more than ready for the long Labor Day weekend holiday. The nonfarm payroll report came in pretty much as expected, with the economy adding 315,000 new jobs, versus expectations for 298,000.

All the major indexes were initially hit with more selling Thursday, as the tech-heavy Nasdaq and the Russell 2000 were both down over 2% by the noon hour. However, stocks staged a late-day rally, with both the Dow Jones industrials and the S&P 500 posting small gains by the close, with the other two indexes narrowing losses.

Treasury yields exploded higher Thursday, as the sellers came in big time. All across the Treasury curve, double-digit basis-point increases pushed yields up 4% and higher. The two-year yield exploded over the 3.50% level, the highest for that government security since 2007. The inversion with the 10-year note, which closed at 3.27%, has narrowed recently but still remains a possible harbinger of recession.

The good news for beleaguered consumers is both Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude traded lower Thursday, once again on global growth concerns. Both closed down over 3% with WTI sinking below the $90 level to close at $86.39. The only winner in the energy complex was once again natural gas, which closed higher after it was reported that U.S. natural gas consumption for power generation hit a record high in July, and demand for the energy source is only continuing to grow around the world.

Both gold, which slid under the $1,700 level for the first time in over a year, and Bitcoin, which closed below $20,000 again, were weak, following the overall market lead.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week with a goal of finding fresh ideas for investors and traders alike. Some of these daily analyst calls cover stocks to buy. Other calls cover stocks to sell or avoid. Remember that no single analyst call should ever be used as a basis to buy or sell a stock. Consensus analyst target data is from Refinitiv.

These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Friday, September 2, 2022.

AerSale Corp. (NASDAQ: ASLE): Stifel initiated coverage with a Buy rating and a $23 target price. The consensus target is $20. The shares closed over 3% higher on Thursday at $19.98.

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBY): Baird reiterated an Underperform rating with a $4 target price, the same as the consensus for the troubled retailer. The stock closed almost 9% lower on Thursday at $8.71, as the stock has been a wild meme stock ride over the past month, and the company announced a massive restructuring.


Cars.com Inc. (NYSE: CARS): As inflation raises MSRP, the online portals get more competitive and margins get hit, says Zacks of its Bear of the Day. The stock has traded as high as $19.09 a share in the past year but closed most recently at $12.36. That is down more than 23% year to date.
Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT): Baird stayed positive on the shares with an Outperform rating and a $224 target. The consensus target is $214. Thursday’s close was at $182.40.

Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST): Baird reiterated an Outperform rating with a $575 target price. The consensus target is $573.13. The stock closed on Thursday at $529.17.

Coupa Software Inc. (NASDAQ: COUP): Citigroup initiated coverage with a Buy rating and a $77 target. The consensus target is up at $89.42. The shares closed Thursday at $56.50, which was down over 3% on the day.

CTI Biopharma Corp (NASDAQ: CTIC): Jefferies initiated coverage with a Buy rating and a $13 target. The consensus target is $10.41. The stock closed on Thursday at $6.48.

Five Below Inc. (NASDAQ: FIVE): Goldman Sachs reiterated a Buy rating on the popular retailer and has a $157 target price. The consensus target is $166.95. The stock closed over 6% higher on Thursday at $135.92 despite falling short of estimates.

Futu Holdings Ltd. (NASDAQ: FUTU): J.P. Morgan’s upgrade to Overweight from Neutral included a price target hike to $62 from $55. The consensus target is higher at $166.61. The stock closed on Thursday at $49.03.

GitLab Inc. (NASDAQ: GTLB): J.P. Morgan downgraded the stock from Overweight to Neutral with a $63 target. The consensus target is $73.70 for now. The shares closed Thursday at $50.53, down a stunning 16%, likely on the downgrade. The company is scheduled to report earnings next Tuesday.

Intuit Inc. (NASDAQ: INTU): Citigroup initiated coverage of the software giant with a Buy rating and a $538 price target. The consensus target is $555.63, and Thursday’s close was at $425.50.


iQIYI Inc. (NASDAQ: IQ): UBS raised its Neutral rating to Buy with a $4.80 target price. The consensus target is $6.27. Thursday’s close was at $3.71.

Nvidia Corp. (NASDAQ: NVDA): Goldman Sachs reiterated its Neutral rating on the chip giant and has a $162 target. The consensus target is up at $216.05. The stock closed Thursday at $139.37, down over 7% for the day, after the U.S. restricted chip sales to China.

Nutanix Inc. (NASDAQ: NTNX): Goldman Sachs raised its $16 target price on the Neutral-rated stock to $21. The consensus target is $25.76. The stock closed on Thursday at $22.34, up almost 30% on the day after posting much better than expected earnings for the fiscal fourth quarter and presenting a very positive forward outlook.

Paycom Software Inc. (NYSE: PAYC): Citigroup started coverage with a Buy rating and a $457 target. The consensus target is $402.28. The stock closed at $346.57 on Thursday.
PTC Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: PTCT): Citigroup started coverage with a Buy rating and a $70 target price. The consensus price objective is $53.10. The $51.77 close on Thursday was close to a 4% gain for the day.

Pure Storage Inc. (NYSE: PSTG): Goldman Sachs reiterated a Buy rating and raised the $40 target price to $44. The consensus target is $36.61. The shares closed at $28.23 on Thursday.

Seagate Technology Holdings PLC (NASDAQ: STX): Though Baird reiterated an Outperform rating on the hard drive giant, it also lowered its $80 target price to $70. The shares were last seen on Thursday trading at $65.92.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (NYSE: TSM): Zacks named this as its Bull of the Day stock, citing hot sales and earnings growth. Shares last closed at $81.64, and the consensus price target of $120.09 represents about 47% upside potential.


VNET Group Inc. (NASDAQ: VNET): Credit Suisse downgraded the stock to Neutral from Outperform and lowered its $7.20 target price to $5.90. The consensus target is $11.78. The stock closed on Thursday at $5.28.

Workiva Inc. (NYSE: WK): Citigroup initiated coverage with a Buy rating and an $86 target price. That compares with the higher consensus target of $94.33 and Thursday’s close at $64.92, which was down over 4% for the day.


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Thursday’s early top analyst upgrades and downgrades included Amgen, Apollo Global Management, Baidu, Best Buy, Charles Schwab, ChargePoint, Chewy, CrowdStrike, Datadog, First Solar, Fiserv, Monster Beverage, Rocket Lab, Signify Health, Visa and Welltower. Analyst calls seen later in the day were on Bed Bath & Beyond, HP, Molson Coors Beverage, Okta, Seagate Technology, Workday and more.

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